The Cessna was on a scenic flight to and from the Twelve Apostles.
At the Apollo Bay airfield it bounced on landing several times and crashed through a boundary fence and into a tree.
The ATSB says the incident could have been worse and their investigation underlines the importance of pilots executing a correct go-around during approach and landing.
In a separate investigation by the Bureau, it found faulty fire extinguishing equipment caused a mid-air scare on a flight over south-west Victoria.
On September 3 last year, fire warning lights flickered on and off and then stayed on in the cockpit after a Sharp Airlines flight took off from Portland bound for Essendon.
When the Fairchild SA227-AC aircraft was over Warrnambool the crew went through their fire check procedures and declared a Mayday.
The plane safely diverted to Avalon Airport.
The Bureau says the fault was later found by engineers to be in the fire extinguisher control logic module.
It says the incident highlights the importance of well-designed simulator training for pilots as well as robust threat and error management procedures.